Things You Need Camping – Essentials For A Happy Holiday

Start with a Plan! Before we rush off for that wonderful weekend camping trip, determine the things you need camping. Make sure you plan your trip so that it doesn’t become a weekend-long nightmare.

This Article Was Last Updated On January 12, 2021

This is a list of very basic and simple items and ideas and just a few of the many items and loads of equipment out there available for the camping, fishing, and hiking enthusiast.

We will highlight some things you can check out yourself as we go through this list of the things you need camping.

hiker looking into a sunrise

Camping has a real fascination with it and it an amazing way to spend your holiday or free time. But you can’t just drive off without consideration for the things you will need. Food, tent, bedding, and cooking, among other equipment, are necessities.

The smell of the forests or the ocean, fresh air, and some time spent away from the hectic everyday lifestyle of work and stress leave you refreshed and energized and ready to go again. However, even a simple weekend of camping close to home requires a plan.

Before leaving on you’re camping trip, you need to ensure you have all your camping essentials, things required to make your trip enjoyable and safe.

Are you simply camping out overnight, how will you be cooking and cleaning, do you have gas for the stove, do you have sleeping bags or warm bedding for each member, how about ice for the cooler and many other small items that make up a well-prepared trip.


A shelter is the number one priority of survival outdoors in times of emergency, so it makes sense that this is the most important element of you’re camping adventure.

Always have a reliable waterproof tent shelter sorted before you go, if it been a while between trips, it may be a good idea to unpack your tent/shelter at home before you go.

Put it up in the yard to make sure you have all the pieces and its in good condition, not eaten or destroyed by pests and insects.

You need a tent or some other kind of shelter to protect you from the elements. Ensure it is good and strong enough to withstand strong winds.

A good quality 6-person tent will have windows and doors and a floor attached all in one piece, this helps in keeping any insects and animals out of your shelter and of course snakes cannot easily make their way in.

A one-piece tent is my preferred option particularly if you’re a family group with youngsters.

If no floor, remember to carry some floor covering to offer protection from damp ground and insects. Shelter comes in many forms for different situations.

Hikers may carry a small swag type bed and cover, while a large family with need a more substantial shelter. There is a multitude of choices in the marketplace. Check out the highlighted words for excellent tents.

tent beside a river

Sleeping equipment.

You will not enjoy you’re camping trip if you do get a good night’s sleep. You should, therefore, ensure you have the right sleeping equipment with you.

This can either be a double sleeping bagfor you and your loved one, an inflatable mattress, placed on top of a fold-up cot or anything you can rest on comfortably. Obviously, the equipment you take will largely be determined by your mode of transport to the campsite.

If your walking, an extra warm blanket can be a good idea to keep you comfortable during any nights that turn cold. If your lucky enough to have a good camper trailer being towed by a large family car, you will be very comfortable indeed as you will have ample room to transport all the essentials of camping with you.

We have put together a substantial and in-depth list of best sleeping bags that will satisfy your requirements for bedding for the whole family.

grilling food on a fire


You require energy to keep you lively and active during the camping trip. If you are hiking, select easy to pack and carry foods to keep you energized along the way. You can easily find Dehydrated Packed food in small packaging that you can quickly prepare with minimal equipment, and carry out any discarded packaging with little effort after you are done.

If you have a vehicle you’ll have the opportunity to carry fresh food and cold beverages in high-performance coolers  (These are great ) which are available today that can hold ice as ice for up to 10 days under the right conditions.

12-volt refrigeration, which is simple, compact, affordable and a real game-changer for camping for an extended period. With refrigeration, you can enjoy a wider variety of food, and stay camping for a much longer period.


Water is life. You will need water to bathe, cook, drink, and wash utensils or clothes. You can carry some water with you but sometimes it will not be enough for all the mentioned purposes. so you will have to replenish your supplies if you are traveling long distances.

Another way is to allow (hope) Mother Nature to help out by offering other water sources like wells, creeks, rivers, and dams. However, in different locations and some environments there may be a severe lack of water, ever no water at all, so always be prepared.

Groundwater supplied by nature is not always drinkable, remember the water may be contaminated. This can make you very sick which is not what you want. You should carry a water purifier of some description, to ensure you are drinking something safe. A Personal water straw filter is an excellent addition to your equipment.

Cooking and eating essentials.

You do not have to take your entire kitchen into the wilderness. Pack plastic plates and cutlery since they are easier and lighter to carry. once again depending on the actual type of camping you are doing, carry a camping stove to prepare meals instead of cooking over the fire. Take a look at our list of best cooking stoves.

Remember to carry fuel for the stove if you are planning to stay for a while you don’t want to run out of gas on you’re camping trip. A couple 16 oz propane cylinders secured in the back of the truck is always a good backup.

A simple and lightweight table and chair combination is a very good item to throw in the car also. into a small crate or cardboard box, you can place the essential basic ingredients of food preparation, salt, sugar, flour, and some pots and pans may be a camp/dutch oven.

campfire overlooking a valley


Fire is another important element that makes a camping trip a success. It keeps you warm and comfortable, cooks our food boils water for a cuppa and even keeps animals at bay.

You should, therefore, have a means of lighting fire, a simple matchbox or a lighter is fine. However, lighters and matches can get wet easily and fail to work. Also good and handy to have is a flint in case you lose the use of the other two, maybe a magnifying glass.?

Once again depending on where and how you are going on your trip, it may be necessary to take your own firewood or charcoal briquettes, as a lot of campgrounds no longer allow you to collect fallen timber in the area.


You will also need Lighting for illumination to help you see around in the dark, Led Outdoor lighting fixtures are probably the first choice of lighting when camping out.

They are reliable compact easy to use and are available in many shapes sizes. Some are battery-powered while some are hooked to the power supply, others are rechargeable and can be charged from your vehicle Batteries.

They use very little power, are very bright, and there is sure to be a Led light to suit your needs. A great choice for personal use is a good quality headlamp, these are amazing, take a look at our choice of best headlamps.

They are convenient in that they allow you to use both hands while doing simple chores around the camp cooking, cleaning, and preparing food even reading a magazine.

Several good led lights strategically placed around will be sufficient to light up the whole camp.


How comfortable you are, determines how much you will enjoy the camping trip. Bring clothing and footwear that matches with the current weather in the area you plan to camp.

You should always have some waterproof clothing regardless of the time of year, nature is full of surprises and a sudden downpour can ruin the whole day if your away from your dry campsite.

It makes sense to also have something warm packed in case. A pair of shoes is a must, plus long pants for bush-walking, a wide-brimmed hat, and a long sleeve shirt, a good sunscreen is always packed in.

Hygiene essentials.

Going into the wilderness doesn’t mean you disregard your personal hygiene. Ensure you stay fresh and comfortable by carrying items that ensure your personal cleanliness. They include a toothbrush, toothpaste, wet wipes, soap shampoo, and sanitary items Pack them into a small waterproof bag.

Accidents can happen while you are out there in the woods so you need to be prepared by having a good first aid kit by your side. You will be prone to attack by insects, you may cut yourself, impale yourself with a fish hook, the list is endless.

A typical first aid kit can have painkillers, antibiotics, creams and bandages, sterile gauze, scissors, plastic wrap, and many other first-aid essentials.


You have to be prepared to handle emergency situations that you may encounter during the camping trip. Mobile phone or satellite phone, maybe HF radio for communication, backup batteries for electronics, In another bag have a roll of duct tape, a small roll of wire, some items for repairing tent, and a good rope.

A flashlight or flare even an EPIRB in some instances of total isolation may be wise. These are just some of the many emergency essentials we can carry.

Route and weather update essentials.

If you are venturing into isolated country it is wise to make your journey known to someone trustworthy, so they can inform the authorities in case of emergency. You should have a map, a GPS, or a compass to help you with navigation. They can prove to be useful if you become lost outdoors.

You also need yourself updated about the weather. A portable battery-operated radio can help you with that and will also keep you entertained while camping.


You may require an ax to chop firewood or pin down tent stakes into the ground. An excellent camping knife can also be required to slice a rope or other things to make you’re camping trip convenient and easy. Remember to take a camera with you to capture those beautiful moments in the natural environment.

Carry sunscreen and body lotion to protect your skin from the sunlight and keep your skin moisturized while camping especially during those hot summer months of the year.

Don’t forget the personal entertainment on your device and a good set of headphones. If you’re bringing the youngsters, check out our camping activities for the kids.

Finish with the list.

The list of things you need camping can never be complete, there is so much available today and you could fill a mid-size truck and camper trailer with ease so the above are only some of the important ones that you should always consider carrying during your next camping trip.

You can add more things that will make you more comfortable while camping and things that will make you more fun.

Some people have a favorite folding chair, one of my favorites in the Coleman Oversized Quad Chair some people need their TV, and others need nothing more than a backpack and groundsheet.

Camping can be great fun, but you need to be well prepared. Know or research the area you intend to stay in, and use the above guide and, tick off your own list when preparing you’re camping trip and enjoy your time off the beaten track.  If you have something to add please just let me know below, and we might post it here.

If you have any more questions about the things you need camping, I’ll be more than happy to answer them in the comments section below.

Remember, leave it cleaner than you found it, only footprints not rubbish.


6 thoughts on “Things You Need Camping – Essentials For A Happy Holiday”

  1. Awesome! Thanks for all the excellent information. I love camping, and I believe you pretty much covered anything a person might need when they go. I think my problem is trying to take too much. I want to be prepared for any situation but sometimes less is best. Thanks for the article and I look forward to reading more!

    • Hi Russell, thanks for your comment. Yes It can be a balance between too much stuff and forgetting something, and your right, sometimes less is best. Each of us has our own special requirements, but the basics of a shelter, a warm bed, and a feed in the belly never changes.

      Best of Luck to You

      Cheers Shane.

  2. Fantastic tips. have you ever tried an atomic lighter? They are charged by usb and can start a fire even when wet. They use electricity instead of flames to create a spark.
    My husband and were always diligent to keep a first aid kit handy. What we forgot to do is check it. One year we needed it and all the bandages had fallen out of their packaging due to dry aging of the wrappers. Always check it before going out.

    • Hi Maryanne, i have checked out the atomic lighter and found a couple things i didn’t like Eg: the lid gets in the way and it clogs easily but in a survival situation i would like to have one in my kit. Your quite right always check the first aid kit before going out, many times i have found medications and creams ect out of date. 

      Thanks for the comment 


    • Hi Mike, i am glad you enjoyed my article, i too love camping and travelling, have done lots of camping and road tripping in my life. cant wait to do the next getaway. thanks for your comment.


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